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Ohio Rocks!

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Ohio Rocks!
A Guide to Geologic Sites in the Buckeye State
By Albert B. Dickas
Mountain Press Publishing Company (2015)
ISBN: 978-0-87842-635-5

Reviewed by Anna Dogole - April 30, 2015

Ohio Rocks! A Guide to Geologic Sites in the Buckeye State is the third book in the Geology Rocks! series. This book provides a thrilling overview of fifty localities where you can view some of the most outstanding geologic sites in the great state of Ohio. This book was written by Albert B. Dickas, a geologist who, before retiring, worked as a petroleum geologist and as a professor at University of Wisconsin Superior. He is also the author of 101 American Geo-Sites You've Gotta See.

Gorgeously illustrated, the sites listed are organized by region, covering the Till Plains, the Lake Plain, and the Appalachian Plateau. The book begins with a brief overview of the geologic history of Ohio, and then moves right on to the meat of this book - the geologic sites that are chronicled in Ohio Rocks!. Most of the sites listed in this book are public access sites located on city, state, or federal lands so they are accessible to anyone who wants to visit. This is a big plus, especially if you are doing a geologic tour with children or other nonprofessionals. Some of the sites listed, such as the Sylvania Fossil Park will be of special interest to those with children because in this park you can hunt for fossils, and keep your finds, all for free! Such an adventure might be just the thing to set a young person on the path of becoming a paleontologist - and it is also a lot of fun for older folks as well.

Each of the three main sections of the book begins with a description of the terrain in the given area, along with details on how this terrain was created. For example, the Till Plains were primarily shaped by retreating glaciers. Two or more pages are devoted to each site mentioned in this book, and the entries on each site include information and maps on how to locate the site, the geologic history of the site, and related information, along with pictures of each site. Most of these pictures are in full-color and are ideal for the armchair rockhounds to take a virtual tour of sites they might not otherwise get to visit. These pictures will also help you to select what sites you might want to visit, if you time in the area is limited and you cannot visit all the sites listed in the book.

Ohio Rocks! is a delightful guidebook to the geology of Ohio and the myriad of sites you can visit in the state. It is ideal for those looking for educational destinations to take their kids to (much better than playing video games), for rockhounds looking for new sites to explore, for professional geologists who want to expand their knowledge base - and for all of us rock geeks who simply like looking at rocks. Throughout the language used in this guide is nontechnical, the directions are clear, and the descriptions give you a good idea of what you will see at each site, and the geological processes that formed each location. I highly recommend this book to rockhounds of all ages, and for travelers looking for something unique to see while traveling in or through Ohio!

Related Reviews:

Roadside Geology of Ohio, by Mark J. Camp.
Featuring twenty-five self-guided driving tours that crisscross the state. The Roadside Geology of Ohio provides travelers with a detailed overview of Ohio's geology and key points of geologic interest found throughout the state. It includes detailed maps of both the routes and the geology you will be traveling through.

Iowa's Minerals: Their Occurrence, Origins, Industries, and Lore, by Paul Garvin.
Informative and engaging, Iowa's Minerals is a book that provides a detailed, yet a highly accessible overview of Iowa's minerals, along with information on collecting and identifying these varied minerals.

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